Milford is in the best financial shape it has ever been in with at least $15 million in stabilization and a new certified free cash amount of $5.7 million. A staggering amount and one which puts the town in an excellent position as it enters a special town meeting next month and as it faces huge bills for projects in the coming months.
The largest component of the calculations by Finance Director Zack Taylor is what is called unencumbered and unexpected appropriations which amounted to $3.7 million. He said the most significant reason being the distribution of the town's health insurance claims trust through a premium holiday earlier this year Basically the town had surplus funds upon conversion from the years of self insurance to the third party insurance provider. In addition, numerous departments turned back funds and the police and fire departments salaries and wages account and the finance committee reserve fund went unexpended.
The town began the year with $1.5 million in free cash and Taylor said state aid was above what was budgeted and excise and the hotel taxes were higher than anticipated and general fund revenue was very healthy and the towns levy collections remain excellent with collection rates at 98 percent. Last year free cash came in at $3.8 million and the year before it was $2.5 million so officials, selectmen, the finance committee and department heads are being financially prudent during the year to put the town in such good financial condition. However, the higher number is due to a few one time extraordinary events that won't happen again so caution is advised moving forward.
WMRC's Ed Thompson